Congresswoman Maloney is a strong advocate for a woman’s right to choose and an outspoken supporter of women’s reproductive rights. However, choice is meaningless without access. That is why she has been monitoring the efforts of the anti-choice establishment to devalue a woman’s right to choose and has been actively working against any legislative limits to access.
In the 40 years since the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Roe v. Wade, which guarantees constitutional protection of a woman’s decision to terminate her pregnancy, over 1,000 separate legislative proposals have been introduced affecting abortion policy. The vast majority of these proposals have sought to restrict the availability of abortions, and this same trend can be seen in the Republican House majority. There is a war on women underway and in the last Congress alone, ten votes were taken to roll back on the protections of Roe, as well as numerous votes to curtail family planning funding and even allow hospitals to deny women lifesaving emergency medical care.
Access to Birth Control Act
Congresswoman Maloney introduced the Access to Birth Control (ABC) Act, reintroduced in 2013, which would protect an individual’s access to legal birth control. It would require pharmacies to fill a valid prescription for birth control in a timely manner, and to provide over-the-counter emergency contraception. This legislation will stop pharmacists from infringing on the rights of individuals in this country by making pharmacy refusals illegal.
Men and women in this country have relied on birth control for years in order to make their personal, reproductive decisions. Ninety-eight percent of women have used contraceptives at some point in their lives. Yet there have been increasing reports of pharmacists refusing to sell birth control based on their own personal beliefs. The refusals have been widespread and have been documented in at least 19 states. Pharmacists have refused to sell contraception to men and women who were young and old, married and single, with children and without. In some cases, pharmacists have kept and refused to transfer a prescription, refused to sell over-the-counter emergency contraception, or given the customer false medical information about the requested birth control. Four states even have laws that allow pharmacists to refuse to provide contraception based on personal beliefs.
Access to birth control is a fundamental right which should not be subject to interference by pharmacists. When customers are seeking emergency contraception, a pharmacist’s refusal can be an insurmountable barrier to accessing the contraception within the limited timeframe. Nearly 8 out of 10 Americans believe that a pharmacist should be required to fill prescriptions for birth control, even if they have a religious objection.
More on Reproductive Choice
Washington, D.C. (Dec.10, 2019)—Below is Committee on Oversight and Reform Chairwoman Carolyn B. Maloney's opening statement, as prepared for delivery, for today’s hearing on “Examining the Need for Comprehensive National Paid Family and Medical Leave.”
After she learned her fetus was affected by a rare, severe abnormality that would result in her pregnancy ending either in stillbirth or a baby whose life necessitated immediate medical intervention, a small business owner from Missouri and her husband decided the "greatest act of love" they could take as parents would be to terminate the pregnancy. In deciding to terminate the pregnancy, the couple didn't expect politics to play a role in their experience — but that's exactly what happened.
Missouri health officials’ efforts to shut down the last abortion clinic within state borders are “a denial of basic healthcare services”, the New York congresswoman Carolyn Maloney said at a House oversight committee hearing on Thursday.
Missouri took “extreme actions” to limit reproductive rights, the panel heard. Tactics included tracking patients’ periods and medically unnecessary pelvic exams, amounting to “state-sponsored abuse”, Maloney said.
With Missouri potentially on the verge of becoming the only state without a clinic that performs abortions, Democrats in Congress are holding a hearing Thursday to look into the regulation of clinics by state officials.